Agricultural Reviews

  • Chief EditorPradeep K. Sharma

  • Print ISSN 0253-1496

  • Online ISSN 0976-0741

  • NAAS Rating 4.84

Frequency :
Quarterly (March, June, September & December)
Indexing Services :
AGRICOLA, Google Scholar, CrossRef, CAB Abstracting Journals, Chemical Abstracts, Indian Science Abstracts, EBSCO Indexing Services, Index Copernicus
Agricultural Reviews, volume 36 issue 4 (december 2015) : 339-344

Regulation of postnatal development of testes and its association with puberty and fertility - A review

B.S. Bharath Kumar*, Sujata Pandita, Ankur Sharma1, Vyankat Jadhav, Simson Soren, Bhabesh Mili, Aashiq H. Ganaie2, Nazir Ahmad Mir, Narendra Kumar3, Vandna, Amit Kumar3
1<p>ICAR-Dairy Cattle Physiology Division,&nbsp;National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal-132 001, India.</p>
Cite article:- Kumar* Bharath B.S., Pandita Sujata, Sharma1 Ankur, Jadhav Vyankat, Soren Simson, Mili Bhabesh, Ganaie2 H. Aashiq, Mir Ahmad Nazir, Kumar3 Narendra, Vandna, Kumar3 Amit (NaN). Regulation of postnatal development of testes and its association with puberty and fertility - A review . Agricultural Reviews. 36(4): 339-344. doi: 10.18805/ag.v36i4.6671.

Indigenous bull breeds attain puberty late in life when compared to the breeds of Bos taurus. Cross breeding between Bos taurus and Bos indicus has decreased the age at puberty and increased the total semen production period of bulls. However, some of the drawbacks like impaired semen production, poor libido, and low freezability are common among the crossbred bulls in India. Leydig and Sertoli cells are the most important non–germinal cells of testes that are essential for sperm production. The development and differentiation of these testicular cells occurs during postnatal period in bull calves and are dependent on the transient rise in gonadotropins, insulin–like growth factor 1 (IGF–1), and other growth factors. Administration of gonadotropins or gonadotropin–releasing hormone (GnRH) before the transient rise initiates the multiplication of Leydig and Sertoli cells, and results in hastened onset of sexual maturity, increased testicular weight, sperm output, and number of germ cells. Supplementation of high–energy diet during the period of 2–6 months is essential as it increases the IGF–1 release that further acts to release GnRH and development of testicular non–germinal cells.  This review highlights some of the developments made with respect to regulation of postnatal development of testes, early detection of fertility, and ways to augment the sperm production capacity.

  1. Abdel-Malak, G. and Thibier, M. (1982). Plasma LH and testosterone responses to synthetic gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) or dexamethasone–GnRH combined treatment and their relationship to semen output in bulls. J. Reprod. Fert., 64:107–113. 

  2. Amann, R.P., (1983). Endocrinological changes associated with onset of spermatogenesis in Holstein bulls. J. Dairy Sci., 66:2606–2622.

  3. Amann, R.P. and Walker, O.A. (1983). Changes in pituitary–gonadal axis associated with puberty in Holstein bulls. J. Anim. Sci., 57:422–433.

  4. Amann, R.P., Wise, W.E., Glass, J.D. and Nett, T.M. (1986). Prepubertal changes in the hypothalamic pituitary in Holstein bulls. Biol. Reprod., 34:71–80.

  5. Anandlaxmi, N. and Vijayan, E. (1998). Studies on the effect of intratesticular administration of opioid peptides, naloxone or n–acetyl p–endorphin antiserum on some testicular parameters in rats. Indian J. Physiol. Pharmacol., 42:107–112.

  6. Bagley, C.V. and Chapman, C.K. (2005). Breeding Soundness Evaluation of Bulls Animal Health Utah State University. 1:1–2.

  7. Bagu, E.T., Madgwick, S., Duggavathi, R., Bartlewski, P.M. and Barrett, D.M. et al., (2004). Effects of treatment with LH or FSH from 4 to 8 weeks of age on the attainment of puberty in bull calves. Theriogenology, 62:861–873.

  8. Barb, C.R. and Kraeling, R. (2004). Role of leptin in the regulation of gonadotropin secretion in farm animals. Anim. Reprod. Sci., 82:155–167.

  9. Bardin, C.W., Cheng, C.Y., Mustow, N.A. and Gunsalus, G.L. (1994). The Sertoli cell. In: The Physiology of Reproduction pp 1291–1333 Eds E. Knobil and J.D. Neill. Raven Press, New York.

  10. Barth, A.D., Brito, L.F.C. and Kastelic, J.P. (2008). The effect of nutrition on sexual development of bulls. Theriogenology, 70:485–495.

  11. Berndtson, W.E., Igboeli, G. and Pickett, B.W. (1987). Relationship of absolute numbers of Sertoli cells to testicular size and spermatogenesis in young beef bulls. J. Anim. Sci., 64:241–246.

  12. Bharath Kumar, B.S., Pandita, S., Prakash, B.S., Mallick, S., Mohanty, T.K., Mandal, D.K. and Mili, B. (2015). Luteinizing hormone, testosterone and total estrogens response to exogenous GnRH in crossbred bulls with differing semen quality. Liv. Sci., 174:150–153.

  13. Blanchard, T.L. and Johnson, L. (1997). Determination of daily sperm production in stallion testes by enumeration of germ cells in homogenates. Theriogenology, 47:655–664.

  14. Blache, D., Zhang, S. and Martin, G.B. (2003). Fertility in male sheep: modulators of the acute effects of nutrition on the reproductive axis of male sheep. Reprod., (Supplement) 61:387–402.

  15. Brann, D.W., (1995). Glutamate: a major excitatory transmitter in neuroendocrine regulation. Neuroendocrinol., 61:213–225.

  16. Bratton, R.W., Musgrave, S.D., Dunn, H.O., Foote, R.H. and Henderson, C.R. (1956). Semen production and fertility of young bulls raised on three different energy levels of feed intake. J. Anim. Sci., 15:1296–1297. 

  17. Byerley, D.J., Bertrand, J.K., Berardinelli, J.G. and Kiser, T.E. (1990). Testosterone and luteinizing hormone response to GnRH in yearling bulls of different libido. Theriogenology, 34:1041–1049.

  18. Chandolia, R.K., Honaramooz, A., Bartlewski, P.M., Beard, A.P. and Rawlings, N.C. (1997). Effects of treatment with LH releasing hormone before the early increase in LH secretion on endocrine and reproductive development in bull calves. J. Reprod. Fert., 111:41–50.

  19. Chapwanya, A., Callanan, J., Larkin, H., Keenan, L. and Vaughan, L. (2008). Breeding soundness evaluation of bulls by semen analysis, testicular fine needle aspiration cytology and trans-scrotal ultrasonography. Irish Vet. J., 61:315–318.

  20. Curtis, S.K. and Amann, R.P. (1981). Testicular development and establishment of spermatogenesis in Holstein bulls. J. Anim. Sci., 53:1645–1657.

  21. Devkota, B., Takahasi, K., Matsuzaki, S., Matsui, M. and Miyamoto, A. et al., (2011). Basal levels and GnRH-induced responses of peripheral testosterone and estrogen in Holstein bulls with poor semen quality. J. Reprod. Dev., 57:373–378.

  22. Estienne, M.J., McElwain, K.V., Barrett, J.B. and Barb, C.R. (1999). Effects of n-methyl-d, l- aspartate on secretion of growth hormone releasing hormone from the boar hypothalamic-preoptic area and median eminence in vitro. Domest. Anim. Endocrin., 17:403-407.

  23. Evans, A.C.O., Currie, W.D. and Rawlings, N.C. (1993). Opioidergic regulation of gonadotropin secretion in the early prepubertal calf. J. Reprod. Fert., 99:45–51.

  24. Evans, A.C.O., Davis, F.J., Nasser, L.F., Bowman, P. and Rawlings, N.C. (1995). Differences in early patterns of gonadotrophin secretion between early and late maturing bulls, and changes in semen characteristics at puberty. Theriogenology, 43:569–578.

  25. Faber, N.F. and Roser, J.F. (2000). Testicular biopsy in stallions, diagnostic potential and effects on prospective fertility. J. Reprod. Fert., (Supplement) 56:31–42.

  26. G’bor, G., Mzes, M., Tzer, F., Boz, S. and Szcs, E. et al., (1995). Relationship among testosterone response to GnRH administration, testes size and sperm parameters in Holstein-Friesian bulls. Theriogenology, 43:1317–1324.

  27. Handelsman, D.J., Spaliviero, J.A., Scott, C.D. and Baxter, R.C. (1985). Identification of insulin-like growth factor-1 and its receptors in the rat testis. Acta Endocrin., 109:543–549.

  28. Higdon, H.L., Spitzer, J.C., Hopkins, F.M. and Bridges, Jr., W.C. (2000). Outcomes of breeding soundness evaluation of 2898 yearling bulls subjected to different classification systems. Theriogenology, 53:1321–1332.

  29. Honaramooz, A., Cook, S.J., Beard, A.P., Bartlewski, P.M. and Rawling, N.C. (1999). Nitric oxide regulation of gonadotropin secretion in prepubertal heifers. J. Neuroendocrin., 11:667–676.

  30. Longo, K.M., Sun, Y. and Gore, A.C. (1998). Insulin-like growth factor-I effects on gonadotropin-releasing hormone biosynthesis in GT1–7 cells. Endocrin., 139:1125–1132.

  31. Lunstra, D.D., Ford, J.J. and Echternkamp, S.E. (1978). Puberty in beef bulls: hormone concentrations, growth, testicular development, sperm production and sexual aggressiveness in bulls of different breeds. J. Anim. Sci., 46:1054.

  32. Lunstra, D.D., Gregory, K.E. and Cundiff, L.V. (1988). Heritability estimates and adjustment factors for the effects of bull age and age of dam on yearling testicular size in breeds of beef bulls. Theriogenology, 30:127–136.

  33. Madgwick, S., Bagu, E.T., Duggavathi, P.M., Barrett, D.M.W. and Huchkowsky, S. et al., (2008). Effects of treatment with GnRH from 4 to 8 weeks of age on the attainment of sexual maturity in bull calves. Anim. Reprod. Sci., 104:177–188.

  34. Mongkonpunya, K., Hafs, H.D., Convey, E.M., Tucker, H.A. and Oxenderw, D. (1975). Serum luteinizing hormone, testosterone and androstenedione in pubertal and prepubertal bulls after gonadotropin releasing hormone. J. Anim. Sci., 40:683–686.

  35. Mukhopadhyay, C.S., Gupta, A.K., Yadav, B.R., Khate, K. and Raina, V.S. et al., (2010). Subfertility in males, an important cause of bull disposal in bovines. Asian Australas. J. Anim. Sci., 23:450–455.

  36. Okwun, O.E., Igboeli, G., Ford, J.J., Lunstra, D.D. and Johnson, L. (1996). Number and function of Sertoli cells, number and yield of spermatogonia, and daily sperm production in three breeds of boar. J. Reprod. Fert., 107:137–149.

  37. Post, T.B., Christensen, H.R. and Seifert, G.W. (1987). Reproductive performance and productive traits of beef bulls selected for different levels of testosterone response to GnRH. Theriogenology, 27:317–328.

  38. Rajak, S.K., (2012). Testicular fine needle aspiration cytology to evaluate fertility in Crossbred (Karan Fries) bulls. M.V.Sc thesis, National Dairy Research Institute, Karanal, Haryana.

  39. Rawlings, N.C. and Evans, A.C.O. (1995). Androgen feedback during the early rise in LH secretion in bull calves. J. Endocrin., 145:243–249.

  40. Roser, J.F. and Faber, N.F. (2007). Testicular biopsy. In: Samper JV, Pycock JF, McKinnon AO. eds: Current Therapy in Equine Reproduction. St Louis: Saunders, pp 205–211.

  41. Sahni, K.L. and Mohan, G. (1998). Annual report of animal reproduction division. Indian Veterinary Research Institute. Izatnagar, U.P.

  42. Schillo, K.K., Hall, J.B. and Hileman, H.M. (1992). Effects of nutrition and season on the onset of puberty in the beef heifer. J. Anim. Sci. 70:3994–4005.

  43. Schneider, J.E. (2004). Energy balance and reproduction. Physiol. Behav., 81:289–317.

  44. Sethi, R.K., Raina, V.S., Joshi, B.K. and Gurnani, M.G. (1989). Multistage selection of crossbred males and effect of their age and body weight on semen quality and freezability. Indian J. Anim. Sci., 59:171–174.

  45. Stumpf, T.T., Wolfe, M.W. , Roberson, M.S., Kittok, R.J. and Kinder, J.E. (1993). Season of the year inûuences concentration and pattern of gonadotropins and testosterone in circulation of the bovine male. Biol. Reprod., 49:1089–1095.

  46. Sudheer, S. and Xavier , C.J. (2000). Disposal pattern of breeding bulls in Kerala. Indian J. Anim. Reprod., 211:72–73.

  47. Threlfall, W.R. and Lopate, C. (1993). Testicular biopsy. In: McKinnon AO and Voss JL. (Eds.): Equine reproduction. Lea and Febiger, USA, pp 943–949.

  48. Trocóniz, J.F., Beltrán, J., Bastidas, H., Larreal, H. and Bastidas, P. (1991). Testicular development, body weight changes, puberty and semen traits of growing Guzerat and Nellore bulls. Theriogenology, 35:815–826.

  49. Tyagi, S., Mathur, A.K., Agarwal, S.C. (2000). Semen production performance of Frieswal bulls. Indian J. Anim. Reprod., 70:1032–1034. 

  50. Vale, F.V., Bergman, A.J., Andrade, V.J., Quirino, C.R. and Reis, R.S. et al., (1997). Andrological characteristics of Nelore bulls for the first breeding season. Revista Brasileira De Reproduo Animal, 21:42–45. 


Editorial Board

View all (0)